Great Throughts Treasury

This site is dedicated to the memory of Dr. Alan William Smolowe who gave birth to the creation of this database.


"In our obsession with original sin, we have forgotten Original Innocence." -

"Our obsession with test scores has produced distorted curriculum, teaching, and educational policy. As long as it continues, we will get the dual phenomena of rising test scores and too many illiterate and enumerate citizens." - Ernest Leroy Boyer

"Our current obsession with creativity is the result of our continued striving for immortality in an era when most people no longer believe in an after-life." -

"[Idolatry as] the moments when we forget who we really are and instead of remembering that we are sparks of the Divine, we start giving up our power to a guru, an ideology, a romantic obsession, a stressful job that begins to define us, or an unhealthy habit we think we can’t live without. Even is we no longer build or worship physical idols like in ancient times, we have modern-day addictions and pressures that cause us to forget that our purpose here is to be a vehicle for Divine energies." - Ted Falcon

"I find that if I remind myself (frequently) that the purpose of life isn't to get it all done but to enjoy each step along the way and live a life filled with love, it's far easier for me to control my obsession with completing my list of things to do." - Richard Carlson

"I know quite certainly that I myself have no special talent; curiosity, obsession and dogged endurance, combined with self-criticism have brought me to my ideas." - Albert Einstein

"There are people who want to keep our sex instinct inflamed in order to make money out of us. Because, of course, a man with an obsession is a man who has very little sales-resistance." - C. S. Lewis, fully Clive Staples "C.S." Lewis, called "Jack" by his family

"What moves men of genius, or rather what inspires their work, is not new ideas, but their obsession with the idea that what has already been said is still not enough." - Eugène Delacroix, fully Ferdinand Victor Eugène Delacroix

"I wonder why love is so often equated with joy when it is everything else as well. Devastation, balm, obsession, granting and receiving excessive value, and losing it again. It is recognition, often of what you are not but might be. It sears and it heals. It is beyond pity and above law. It can seem like truth." - Florida Scott-Maxwell

"Your ability to use the principle of autosuggestion will depend, very largely, upon your capacity to concentrate upon a given desire until that desire becomes a burning obsession." - Napoleon Hill

"Perhaps the greatest price men have paid for the obsession with fearlessness is to have become tough on the outside but empty within. We are hollow men. The connection between fearlessness and feelinglessness should be obvious." - Sam Keen

"Our current obsession with creativity is the result of our continued striving for immortality in an era when most people no longer believe in an after-life." - Arianna Huffington, born Arianna Stassinopoulos

"I marvel at the resilience of the Jewish people. Their best characteristic is their desire to remember. No other people has such an obsession with memory. " -

"The creative habit is like a drug. The particular obsession changes, but the excitement, the thrill of your creation lasts. " - Henry Spencer Moore

"Gratitude is indeed like a gearshift that can move our mental mechanism from obsession to peacefulness, from stuckness to creativity, from fear to love. The ability to relax and be mindfully present in the moment comes naturally when we are grateful." - Joan Borysenko

"The more decadent a culture gets, the more they have a need for what they don't have at all, which is innocence, so you end up with kiddie porn and a perverse obsession with youth." - Joni Mitchell, born Roberta Joan Anderson

"It’s not enough, however, to blame our environmental problems on the obsession with growth. A system of deeply entrenched structures — of which growth is merely a surface manifestation — makes up our society. These structures are beyond moral control, much as the flow of adrenaline is beyond the control of a frightened creature This system has, in effect, the commanding quality of natural law." - Murray Bookchin

"He's got an obsession to immunize corporations." - Ralph Nader

"Coercion, after all, merely captures man. Freedom captivates him." - Ronald Reagan, fully Ronald Wilson Reagan

"What the New Yorker calls home would seem like a couple of closets to most Americans, yet he manages not only to live there but also to grow trees and cockroaches right on the premises." - Russell Baker. fully Russell Wayne Baker

"Those who refuse His mercy satisfy His justice in another way. Without His mercy, they cannot love Him. Without love for Him they cannot be 'justified' or 'made just'. That is to say: they cannot conform to Him Who is love. Those who have not received His mercy are in a state of injustice with regard to Him. It is their own injustice that is condemned by His justice. And in what does their injustice consist? In the refusal of His mercy." - Thomas Merton

"There is an old American saying 'He who lives in a glass house should not try to kill two birds with one stone." - Vladimir Nabokov, fully Vladimir Vladimirovich Nabokov

"A rescuing idea is one that disagrees with your habitual nature but which agrees with Truth." - Vernon Howard, fully Vernon Linwood Howard

"Addiction is typical in all love stories based on infatuation." - Elizabeth Gilbert

"I watched them, thinking that little girls who make their mothers live grow up to be such powerful women." - Elizabeth Gilbert

"Still it is true that many same-sex couples want nothing more than to join society as fully integrated socially responsible family-centered taxpaying Little League-coaching nation-serving respectably married citizens. So why not welcome them in Why not recruit them by the vanload to sweep in on heroic wings and save the flagging and battered old institution of matrimony from a bunch of apathetic ne'er-do-well heterosexual deadbeats like me." - Elizabeth Gilbert

"The only way of enduring one disaster after the next is to love the very idea of disaster: if we succeed, there are no further surprises, we are superior to whatever occurs, we are invincible victims." - Emil M. Cioran

"He wept for truth which was dead, for heaven which was void. Beyond the marble walls and gleaming jeweled altars, the huge plaster Christ had no longer a single drop of blood in its veins." - Emile Zola

"Otherwise than Being. It is a matter of stating the breaking apart of a destiny that reigns in essence whose fragments and modalities—despite their diversity—belong the ones to the others, that is…do not escape Order, as though the ends of the thread cut by the Parque were tied up again after being cut. It is a matter of thinking the possibility of being torn out of essence. To go where? To go into what region? To stand on what ontological plane? But to be torn out of essence contests the unconditional privilege of the question: where?…[This is a] uniqueness for which the out-of-self, the difference relative to self, is non-indifference itself in the extra-ordinary recurrence of the pronominal." - Emmanuel Lévinas , originally Emanuelis Lévinas

"Don't ever make the mistake with people like me thinking we are looking for heroes. There aren't any and if there were, they would be killed immediately. I'm never surprised by bad behaviour. I expect it." - Gore Vidal, fully Eugene Luther Gore Vidal

"Frodo! Mr. Frodo, my dear!' cried Sam, tears almost blinding him. 'It's Sam, I've come!' He half lifted his master and hugged him to his breast." -